The symptoms of stomatitis are inflammation and irritation of the soft tissues of your pet’s mouth. Although it’s often dismissed as nothing serious, over time, it can lead to a more significant condition that requires medical attention. Stomatitis results in ulcers of the soft tissue and can affect the gums, lips, back of the throat, and tongue. It can cause extreme pain, leading to your pet not being able to swallow, drink, or eat. It can affect both cats and dogs, and the sooner that it is diagnosed, the sooner it can be treated and resolved.
What Are the Symptoms of Stomatitis?
Many pets will experience the effects of stomatitis without their owners being aware, but the most common things to look for are:
- Continual bad breath
- Ulcerated mouth tissue
- Pain and discomfort
- Excessive drooling and saliva
- Fluid accumulation in the gums
- Weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Pain with grooming (for cats)
- Inflamed and visibly red soft tissue
- Heavy plaque on teeth that becomes brown or yellow near the gum line
What Causes Stomatitis?
For pets with stomatitis, there is often no discernible cause; it is typically associated with periodontal disease. The reason for this is that the plaque can lead to swollen and irritated gums. Over time, the bacteria at the gum line will multiply, leading to an infection. If it becomes advanced enough to lead to an infection, the infection can spread to the bloodstream and threaten your pet’s vital organs.
Other Causes Associated with Feline and Canine Stomatitis
Other things that can lead to stomatitis in pets are:
- Kidney failure
- Hormone disorders like diabetes
- Viral or fungal infections
- A compromised immune system
- An adverse effect to taking medication
- Bite wounds
It is also known to develop due to a pet eating something toxic or biting on an electrical cord.
What is the Treatment for Stomatitis?
Stomatitis is a condition marked by being difficult to treat or entirely cure, and many pets will have several episodes over time. The best way to tackle it is to stay on top of it. Since it is an extremely painful condition, it is a good idea to look for early signs before it becomes a problem by having your pet’s dental status examined regularly. If you notice signs, it is important to seek care immediately. Anti-inflammatories and pain medications will help with the symptoms until it can be resolved. Antibiotics might also be a treatment option, depending on the severity and how far the condition has advanced.
Stomatitis is a condition that isn’t serious if caught early, but if you allow it to advance too far, it can become extremely painful, and in severe cases, it can be fatal. The best way to treat it is to prevent it through regular dental care. If you notice signs of stomatitis in your pet, it is advisable to seek medical care to rule it out. At Veterinary Pet Care, we humanely treat dental conditions to ensure that your pet isn’t suffering. Contact our office today for an evaluation.